Daily Archives: May 15, 2016

Bookshelf Q. Battler’s Bad Ass Guide to Surviving the Zombie Apocalypse – Chapter 1 – Section 2 – Zombie Proofing Your Home

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Zombies will be trying to break into your crib at all times. You need to nip that shit in the bud.

Whether it’s a swanky mansion in Beverly Hills or a crumbling old shack in East Randomtown, your home is yours. It belongs to you.

And I don’t know about you, noble reader, but I’d rather sing a karaoke version of Taylor Swift’s greatest hits while Japanese businessmen pelt me with rotten eggs than allow a damn dirty zombie to drive me out of my home.

This is America, damn it, and if those zombies want my house they’ll have to either yank my stank ass corpse out of it or at the very least, make me a reasonable offer based on fair market value, adjusted for inflation, with additional moving expenses added in.

I’m not going to tell you that it is possible to fully zombie proof your home. After all, put enough zombies anywhere and they can destroy anything.

But I will tell you that these are some steps that will slow the undead down:

Board Up Your House

Yes, right now.  Every door. Every window. Every entrance. Nail boards over all of it.  Then in bright orange spray paint write “Zombies Not Welcome” all over the boards.  Or, if you want to be tricky, put up a sign that says, “All the Brains in this House Have Already Been Devoured in a Grotesque Manner.”  Zombies are pretty dumb so they’ll fall for it. And let’s face it. No one in your house is a rocket scientist so a sign reading “No Brains Here” wouldn’t even really be that much of a stretch would it?

Do you want to be nailing boards over your doors while zombie hands are busting through the walls and getting all grabby with you? I think not. So nail your house shut and then sit in the corner and wait for the zombie apocalypse like a good reader.

Then again, I suppose if you did all this the neighbors would probably assume you are a wacko and call the cops on you.  And it would harm your home’s ventilation, cut down the interior air circulation, rob you of natural lighting,  and turn you into an unhealthy shut in.

Shit. OK. Change of plan. DO NOT board up your house.  But go to Home Depot and get a bunch of boards and store them somewhere nice and safe so you’ll have them ready to go when the news reports start warning of an impending zombie attack.

If you can’t carry the boards, there are usually a lot of Mexican dudes hanging around outside Home Depot waiting to help people carry anti-zombie attack boards in exchange for a few bucks. That’s not a racist statement. That’s just how it is.

In fact, and I don’t mean to tell the news media how to do their jobs here, but someone really needs to ask Donald Trump who the hell is going to carry all of our anti-zombie home protection boards when all the Mexicans are sent to the other side of the wall that he wants to build and bill to the Mexicans.

By the way, that reminds me:

You Need to Build a Wall

You need to build a giant wall around the entire perimeter of your home. You need to do it fast, you need to do it now and you need to make the zombies pay for it.

Don’t let the zombies fool you.  Many of them are still carrying the wallets that belonged to the people they were before they became undead shells of their formers selves. So they’ve got the cash to reimburse you for anti-zombie wall.

In that wall, there should be a door. You can use it if you ever want to leave your home for whatever reason. Maybe you need to go on supply runs or something.

Now it’s your home so you can choose to let zombies in if you want, provided that they pass through your rigorous vetting process, but make no mistake about it, zombies will only be allowed to pass through the door in your wall legally.

Look, this idea isn’t going to be popular but I’m just going to say it. Maybe we ought to put a total moratorium on all zombies entering your home until we figure out what in the hell these zombies are up to.

So get your ass back to Home Depot, grab some bricks and mortar and hire those Mexicans to build your wall for you. The higher the better because pole vaulting is not exactly a zombie’s strong suit.

Um, you might need to get some permits and the approval of various officials before you build your wall.  There’s probably limits on how high you can build too.  You know what, I’m just going to let you figure that part out on your own. I can’t do everything for you.

Get a Gas Powered Generator

These will become a hot commodity during a zombie apocalypse so rather than wait and put yourself in a position where you’ll have to sell you body to some redneck in order to get one, why not invest in one today?

Go get one, get it set up, and keep a reasonable supply of gas on hand. I mean, you don’t want to keep so much that you’ll burn down your house, but enough so that you’ll at least be able to run the lights and let your kids play their stupid video games so that you won’t have to talk to them or read to them or do any parenting or shit.

(That was a joke. Parent your kids and teach them to be solid citizens.  Who knows? Maybe with your help they’ll grow up to become respectable world leaders who won’t allow a zombie apocalypse to happen.)

Security Systems

If you have a home alarm monitoring system, it’s not going to work once the power goes out.

Thus, a pesky zombie could break into your house and if you’re fast asleep, you won’t know he’s inside until he’s munching on your face.

Various anti-zombie experts will differ on this, but I recommend hiring a band of hobos to walk around your house.  Promise to send some food their way once in awhile and in exchange, they’ll be expect to shout, “BEEP, BEEP, BEEP!” if they see any zombies coming your way.

Oh, right. My attorney advises me to to warn you that hobos are a violent, ill-tempered lot and should not be trusted anywhere near your home.

Really? That seems kind of racist against hobos.  Wait. Hobos aren’t a race. Classist? I don’t know.

You know what. Forget it. Don’t put hobos in charge of guarding your house.  Damn lawyers ruin everything.

Store Food/Water

Who knows how long the zombie apocalypse is going to last?

If you’re stuck in your home for an extended time period, you’re going to get the munchies like a futhermucker.

I’m no expert, but rarely has that ever stopped me from offering my opinion on anything, so here goes.

Perishables won’t last very long. Raw meat, cheese, milk, it’s all going to expire quickly if the zombies knock the power out and you didn’t have the foresight to get yourself a back-up generator.

You’ll probably want some powdered milk, packaged foods. Twinkies, I’m told, will last through a nuclear war and I know this because whenever I eat one I feel like it is still dancing in my belly for hours.

Do they still make Twinkies? I thought they stopped making them for awhile but then I thought they made a comeback. I don’t know.

Water is definitely something you’ll want. There’s all kinds of literature out there that will tell you how to keep it safe and drinkable even after storing it for long periods of time.

Do you know they have this invention now where it is like a giant bag you can put in your tub, fill it up with water and then your tub becomes like your own personal water storage tank?

Obviously, if there’s an impending disaster that could affect the quality of your water, you’ll want to fill that bag before said disaster.

With zombies, you could probably wait until news of a zombie epidemic spreads.

Then again, zombies have been known to pee in town water supplies.

You know what? It’s up to you. If you want to stop showering so you can leave a giant water bag in your tub in the event of a zombie apocalypse, be my guest.

Sorry.  There are probably people out there more qualified than I am to tell you how to package and preserve your water and food stuffs.

“You need twinkies and water” is the best advice I can give you.

Also, if it gets down to the point where you have to drink your own urine, consider just giving up and letting the zombies have you.

I mean, it’s your wizz, for Christ’s sake. There can’t be anything tangy or delicious about that.

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Ask the Alien – 5/15/16 – Genre Mashing with Dakota Kemp

By: Alien Jones, Intergalactic Correspondent

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“Hmm yes. Hot steampunk chicks with big cannons. I dig it.”

Greetings Earth Losers.

The Esteemed Brainy One here.  The intergalactic trade war over irregular pants continues, but alas, I have done all I can. I have since moved on to Dromodo, where the beings are fighting over the right to marry.

I have heard you humans have been squabbling over that right yourselves (i.e. who should and shouldn’t be allowed to marry) but the Dromodons have a different kind of fight going on.

None of them want to get married ever again.  The government wants to hitch everyone up in forced marital bliss whereas the Dromodons just want to chill out and let their freak flags fly.

That’s what they call their genitals. “Freak flags.”  Very disgusting. Just take my word for it. You don’t want me posting any pictures of that nonsense.

Anyway, I just received this transmission from Earth writer, Dakota Kemp:

Should storytellers cross genre boundary lines? Or should authors like Bookshelf Q. Battler and I be considered clinically insane for their penchant of smooshing together wildly disparate genres?

For example, I’m mashing together the steampunk and sword-and-sorcery genres in my novel, Ironheart: The Primal Deception just as BQB does with westerns and zombie dystopia in How the West Was Zombed.

Are BQB and I unrecognized geniuses or delusional losers?

Hmmm.  Like Charlie Sheen on a Friday night, that question is loaded.

Perhaps I’ll start by taking a look at your latest novel, which I’m told just hit Amazon’s virtual shelves on May 12:

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Well, you’ve got all the trappings of a good novel here. A serious looking man with a derby. Old warrior who looks like he’s up to something. Hot chick with a big ass weapon.

I like it.  And really, the whole secret to good writing is that you, the author, like it.  And it appears to me that you do.

People try so hard to put books into boxes and slap labels on them.

The big question is “Are you having a good time while you write it?”

If you’re having fun, then it will show in your writing.

Everyone is different.  Some people are old ladies who love to write cozy mysteries in which their precocious kitty cats solve crimes.

Others are lonely housewives who unleash their pent up angst with steamy erotica.

Some people are like Bookshelf Q. Battler who beats himself up a lot over past mistakes and then inevitably writes stories about characters who goofed something up big time and are forever trying to make amends for it in some way.

The general advice I have heard from authors is that you try to “write for market” i.e. slap together a book that fits a cookie cutter cutout of every other book that is doing well, it probably will not do well if your heart and soul isn’t reflected in that book.

In other words, just write what you love to write about. If you love certain genres, and you enjoy mashing them up together, then by all means do so.

Think about it.

Do you want to eat a store bought cake that’s one in a hundred that was dumped off the back of a delivery truck yesterday?

Or do you want to eat a cake that was made with love by a little old lady baker who gets up at four a.m. every day?

The corporate clowns at your local chain grocery store don’t care about your taste buds or the art of cake making, but the little old lady who has studied baking her entire life certainly cares.

And perhaps that little old lady has a few tricks up her sleeve.  Maybe she adds a pinch of cinnamon or a dash of nutmeg to her cakes to really make your taste buds sing. Corporate clowns will never do that. They’ll just bust out their calculators, crunch the numbers, and decide they can still sell cakes without the added expense of nutmeg.

You sir, are clearly a nerd (no offense as nerds are held up with more reverence these days) who loves the steampunk and sword-and-sorcery genres.

You took your time, put in the work, built your own world and then birthed it into this one.

Are you insane and/or delusional?  No. If you enjoyed writing your book, it will show and once the word gets out, you’ll have way more readers than BQB’s paltry 3.5.

Dakota, there’s an old commercial for Reese’s peanut butter cups in which various humans complain in jest to one another, “You got chocolate in my peanut butter. No, you got peanut butter in my chocolate!”

Once upon a time companies just made chocolate. Then Mr. Reese shoved some peanut butter up a chocolate candy’s butt and people have enjoyed getting that much more obese ever since.

You’ll never know what people will like until you try.  Mr. Reese loved chocolate and peanut butter.  They’re better together, and I’m willing to bet that steampunk and sword-and-sorcery fantasy will mix just as well.

Sure, there will be plenty of squares who will tell you “don’t do this or that.”

They’ll tell you that genres are a lot like the lyrics to that fine 1994 song Come Out and Play by the Offspring.  “You got to keep ’em separated.”

Except, no you don’t.  Toss all the genres you want in a big bowl, mix them up, pop them in the oven, serve up your dish to the readers and let them decide.

By the way, don’t compare yourself to the lowly BQB. You two are in different leagues.

You sir, got a book to market, whereas BQB just screws around all day and maybe if I’m lucky he’ll write a chapter or two once a week.  He’s not exactly doing his part to stave off the Mighty Potentate’s conquest of Earth.

But you are, and that’s why your name will be added to the protected rolls once the MP rolls into town.

Good luck Dakota and stop by to let us know how your book launch went.

Alien Jones out.

Alien Jones is the Bookshelf Battle Blog’s intergalactic correspondent, graciously lending the power of his brain to answer your questions.

Ask the Alien a question and he may very well plug your book or blog in his answer.  Ask questions in the comments or tweet them to @bookshelfbattle

Together, we can promote self-published material and ween the masses off reality television, a form of entertainment that Alien Jones’ boss, the maniacal alien despot known as “The Mighty Potentate” despises so much that he’s plotting an invasion of Earth just to stop it.

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Bookshelf Q. Battler’s Bad Ass Guide to Surviving the Zombie Apocalypse – Chapter 1 – Pre-Apocalypse Planning – Section 1 – Getting Your Body in the Best Physical Condition Possible

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You’ve got a lot of work to do between now and the zombie apocalypse, my friend.

Noble readers, waiting until the Zombie Apocalypse begins to figure out how to save yourself from the undead hordes is a lot like waiting until you walk in on your girlfriend bumping uglies with your best buddy in your bedroom to confront them even though you know you saw them making googly eyes at each other at that raging kegger last Thursday.

Either way, the situation stinks (figuratively and literally) and someone’s getting screwed.

Do you kids still do keggers?  I have no idea. Bill Clinton was chasing interns around the oval office with his pants around his ankles when I was in college.

At any rate, you get my point. A Zompoc may or may not be coming but if it does, then you’ll want to be like Bill Paxton in Twister and get ahead of that shit storm.

Sorry. There will be many 1990’s references throughout this guide. Be forewarned.

Take copious notes, students, because I’m going to break down what you need to do so that you will be ready when the undead start breaking down your door.

Way in advance of the Zombie Apocalypse you will need to:

  1. Get your body in the best physical condition possible.
  2. Zombie proof your home.
  3. Pack a bug-out bag in case you need to flee your home.
  4. Identify ideal places to flee to if you must flee your home.

Pay attention, Geekensteins, because there’s going to test on this later.  And no it’s not going to be a multiple choice test. It’s going to be an “Oh my God a damn zombie is trying to eat my face so now I wish I had paid more attention to Bookshelf Q. Battler!” kind of a test.

That’s right. I’m going to save you from a zombie eating your face.

PREP STEP #1 – Get Your Body in the Best Physical Condition Possible 

Cardio

In addition to being perhaps the best comedic film about zombies, Zombieland also provided the world with a great deal of useful information.

Jesse Eisenberg wasn’t kidding when he advised you to do lots of cardio. The longer you can run without breaking a sweat or getting tired, the less likely it is that a damn zombie will chase you.

Amongst the zombie expert community, there’s a difference of opinion about just how fast zombies are.  Some say they are incredibly slow and dim-witted. Others say that they are very fast and dim-witted.

Everyone agrees that zombies are dumber than cacti, but personally, I don’t want to wait until a zombie’s teeth are clamping down on my vital organs to find out how fast they move.

No thank you. I’m going to assume that all zombies move like Jackie Joyner Kersey.

Jackie Joyner Kersey? Anyone? Anyone? Famous Olympian from the 1980s and 90s?

Shit I’m old. Maybe I ought to just give up and lie down and allow the zombies to have their filthy way with me.

No.  I can’t. I have to think of you.  There are so many lives I can still save with my anti-zombie knowledge.

Bottomline.  I get it. Life is hard. You’re very busy. There’s always ten things you need to do that are more pressing than getting your butt on that treadmill in your spare room that you turned into a coat rack long ago.

But if the thought of running away from a pack of hungry zombies for a little bit until you keel over from exhaustion and get torn limb from limb won’t motivate you to jump on that treadmill and bump up the incline then I don’t know what will.

P.S. even if the zombie apocalypse never happens, all this working out is going to make you look fab-u-lous!

Strength Training

Cardio’s great but you’re also going to need to pump your pythons.

What…what are you doing? No. Stop. That wasn’t a masturbation euphemism.

I’m talking about lifting weights.

Now, I belong to a gym and like any gym in America, it’s filled with two things:

  1. Old dudes who feel a bizarre need to walk all over the locker room with their wrinkled as hell wangs flapping in the breeze on full display.  

I’m not even kidding. They comb their hair while they’re naked, they shine their shoes while they’re naked, they tie their shoes, shave off their beards, trim their nose hairs, they do all of this nonsense while they’re naked. For Christ sake’s, old dudes, put on your pants then go through your entire bodily grooming regimen!

And before you say it, no, it’s not that I’m complaining because they’re old. I’d complain if a young dude this too. But young dudes don’t do this. Young dudes (whatever, just because I watched Friends while it was still on the air doesn’t mean I can’t call myself young so shut up) usually exercise discretion and keep their pants on.

Seriously. I don’t know what it is with old dudes in locker rooms. Maybe they figure they’re going to croak soon so they might as well take advantage of their last chance to be voyeuristic, or maybe at a certain age you run out of shits to give and don’t care if your naked walk abouts inspire off-topic rants in books about zombie apocalypse survival, but either way, I must move on.

2. Muscle Bound Dudes Offering You a Neverending Stream of Free, Unsolicited Advice

I don’t know about you but whenever I go to my gym, I can’t lift a bar bell more than three times without some jackass the size of an ox who looks like he’s straight out of Arnold Schwarzengger’s Pumping Iron sauntering up to me to say something like, “You’re doing it all wrong, bro.”

OK I get it. It’s very negative to automatically perceive someone’s attempt to help me as an insult. The guy could actually be trying to help me. Perhaps he knows some strength training techniques that could be of assistance. Maybe he was once a weak ass loser like me and wants to hook me up with some advice.

But frankly, I’ll look at myself in the mirror next to said muscle bound dude and I just feel like saying, “Ha. I get it, sir. Your much manlier than I am. You bang more chicks than I do and your penis probably puts mine to shame. Please now, allow me to struggle with this pink bar bell I stole from the Curves across the street in peace.”

Curves?  You know. Women have all these gyms that are just for them so they don’t have to deal with men checking out their butts while they do their squat thrusts?

I’m not going to say we’re not checking out their butts, but you know, if a female butt happens to be in my line of sight while I’m throwing up my pink bar bell that’s not my fault.

OK. Let’s reign it in here.  You’ll want to get as strong as you can because you’re going to have to lift a lot of heavy shit during the zombie apocalypse.

Maybe you’ll have to carry a big bag of supplies.  Perhaps you’ll have to let your best friend lean on your shoulder for awhile until you reach a shelter.

Hell, you might even have to climb your ass up a tree to avoid a bunch of angry brain chompers.

And based solely on knowledge gained from watching the same zombie apocalypse themed movies and TV shows that you have, I know for a fact that you’re going to be bringing down machetes, baseball bats, tire irons, department store mannequin legs, and other assorted blunt instruments down on zombie heads all day long.

If you don’t pump your cannons, that shit will wear you out.

Put on that muscle so you’ll be ready to do the zombie hustle.  But remember I only said to…

Get Yourself in the Best Physical Condition…Possible

Some of us are naturally born athletes and some of us aren’t. Some people can scarf down a whole pizza and never gain an ounce. Others can chew on a celery stalk and end up with an ass the size of a barcalounger.

We all come in different shapes and sizes.

Do the best you can but realize you’re not a miracle worker either. You have to make do with what God gave you.

There are simple steps you can take immediately. Quit smoking and drinking. Cut back on sugar, caffeine, and peanut butter cups. Stop lying. You’re eating a peanut butter cup right now. I know you are.

Yeah, you think you’re funny but you won’t be laughing breaks himself off a piece of your Kit Kat Bar.

Drink more water and get more fiber in your diet. Eat your vegetables. Eat that yogurt that helps ladies poop. Why don’t they have a yogurt that helps men poop? I feel discriminated against because I don’t have my own poop assistance yogurt. Someone get a civil rights attorney on the phone.

Start today and maybe if the zompoc takes its sweet time, you could end up being an Adonis by the time the biters come a-calling.

But if you’ve got a body that looks like you’ve been freebasing Twinkie cream since the second President Bush said, “Don’t Mess With Texas” and the zombie apocalypse starts tomorrow, then you, my friend, are going to have to rely on bribery to get yourself through the end of days.

You’ll need to bring a bevy of goodies to use as you purchase the assistance of survivors in better shape than you.

And you’ll need to keep these goodies in your bug-out bag.

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